Program Presenters

Connie Bartelson has many varied experiences as facilitator of Prayer-Shawl-Knitting groups throughout Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire.  Besides being the coordinator of the Prayer Shawl Ministry at St. John’s Church in Worcester, MA, she oversees the hat, scarf, mitten drive for the homeless at St. Francis Food for the Poor Center.  She has been co-presenter of this retreat since 2010.

Ann Boyle, RSR is a Sister of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary.  She received her certification in spiritual direction from Cardinal Stritch University, Milwaukee, WI and San Damiano House of Prayer, Lowell, MA. Her ministries have included spiritual direction, the RSR Associate Ministry, the Homebound Ministry, and the Maine Religious Vocation Network, as well as various parish ministries. She is also a graphic designer who uses her professional talent to enhance prayer presentations.

Fr. Carl Chudy, SX is a Xaverian Missionary and has been ordained 32 years.  He has served in the south side of Chicago, Sierra Leone, West Africa, and the Philippines.  While serving as provincial in both the Philippines and the United States, he also worked on the National Board of the Conference of Major Superiors of Men.  After leaving office in 2016, he studied interfaith dialogue, particularly Christian Muslim relations.  Presently he is studying for Doctor of Ministry in dialogue with secular culture, secular humanism, and religious disaffiliation, looking at what “Post secular Catholicism” looks like.  He works full time in interfaith dialogue at Our Lady of Fatima Shrine in Holliston, MA.

Susan Conroy is an author, public speaker and TV host.  As a student at Dartmouth College, Susan travelled to India to work, pray and experience life with Mother Theresa and her Missionary Sisters of Charity in Calcutta.  From her 11 years’ experience there she authored Mother Theresa’s Lessons of Love and Secrets of Sanctity in 2003 and more recently in 2016 Praying with Mother Theresa.  Susan has travelled across the U.S.  and to other countries to speak of her experiences.  She also has made numerous television appearances among which she hosted a 13 part series called “Speaking of Saints” on EWTN.

Michele DeSimone is a Pastoral Associate working in the areas of pastoral care, spiritual direction, and retreats.  She has a BA in sociology from LeMoyne College, Syracuse, NY and a certificate in spirituality from Mercy Center, Madison, CT.  

Beverley Fournier, MA, MTS, M.Div is a spiritual and retreat director serving several local parishes along the North Shore in Massachusetts.   Her passion for contemplative prayer is rooted in Ignatian spirituality, where relationship with God becomes the forefront of the spiritual life.

Donna Griffin has been involved in the Prayer Shawl ministry for several years and is a coordinator for the ministry at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Worcester, MA. With 50 years of experience, she knits for family, church needs and the homeless. She coordinates a knit-in-public day on the grounds of her church in June

Fr. Roger Keeler is a presbyter of the Archdiocese of Edmonton, Canada, currently teaching canon law and field education at the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas.  He has served in various “vineyards” in his thirty five years in the ministerial priesthood, and is especially fond of preaching, teaching, and offering retreats and parish missions.

Fr. David Knight is a priest of the diocese of Memphis and director of His Way Home, a center for spiritual growth, in Memphis, TN.  A renowned author who to date has published forty books, several booklets and manuals and over fifty articles in twenty-nine different periodicals.  He holds a master’s degree in philosophy from Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA), a licentiate in theology from (Fourviere, Lyon, France) and a doctorate in theology from Catholic University (Washington, D.C.).  He is also well-known for his numerous retreats, missions, and workshops across the United States and numerous countries throughout the world.

Marie May Lausier, p.m. studied Spirituality and Theology at the Gregorian University, Rome, Italy, has an M.A. from Fairfield University in CT, and is certified in Marian studies from the Marian Institute in Dayton, OH.  She authored “In Joyful Haste”, the life of Blessed Anne Marie Rivier.  She is a retreat and spiritual director, Rivier Retreat facilitator, and a director of the Marie Rivier Association.

Dr. Paul Lemieux. Ph.D. worked in retreat houses for many years and was retreat director at the Oblate Retreat House in Hudson, NH for nine years.  He holds a Ph.D. in pastoral psychology and counseling from Boston University.  He taught religious studies at Merrimack College and maintained a private psychotherapy practice.  He held leadership positions specializing in the treatment of addictions and psychiatric disorders and served as Treatment Director at Adcare Hospital in Worcester for 20 years.

Jim Markan, MA is a Michigan native.  He has master’s degrees in communication and counseling.  Prior to retirement, he was a human resource executive for a global company.  During retirement, he has been involved with several volunteer activities including teaching enrichment courses for seniors, helping to feed the hungry and assisting the developmentally disabled.  He is a member of Saint Maximilian Kolbe Parish in Scarborough, ME.

Kim le Nguyen holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from The University of Louisiana specializing in watercolor.  At Mount Mary in Milwaukee, WI, she attained a master’s degree in art therapy. Currently, she works at AspenPointe in Colorado Springs, serving individuals with mental illness.  She also works to bring about healing to the active, wounded and retired military personnel, who are diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury using creative processes which she developed. 

Fr. Daniel O’Connell is a diocesan priest, pastor of a parish and staff member of the Office of Spiritual Development in the Archdiocese of Boston, MA.  He is involved with parish-wide retreats and days of prayer.  He is a producer and host on the Boston Catholic Television.

Mary Rich received her certification in spiritual direction and also for mandala assessment from the Mercy Center, Colorado Springs, CO.  She is a retreat and spiritual director, a Rivier Retreat facilitator and is active in the Charismatic community.  Currently, she offers watercolor retreats with mandala assessments.

Jayne Romanek  has been a behind-the-scene assistant at the Praying with Hearts and Hands Weekends for many years.  She is the “go to” person for crocheting, an art her grandmother taught her at 10 years old.  Jayne has crocheted about 30 sample shawls which are models for folks at weekend sessions.  Jayne is a mother, grandmother, and great grandmother.

Nancy Schreck, OSF from Dubuque, IA is currently the Program Director at Excel Inc., a community service organization located in Okolona, MS.  She has previously served in Leadership and formation ministry in her Congregation as well as the LCWR Presidency and as a U.S. Delegate to the International Union of Superiors.  Working both nationally and internationally, Nancy speaks and facilitates for a variety of religious groups.  Her educational background is in Biblical Studies with advanced degrees from Boston College and the Pacific School of Religion.

Bill Sheehan, OMI has a broad experience in pastoral ministry as a pastor and marriage counselor.  He served in the Office of Lay Ministry and as Director of Ministry to priests in the Archdiocese of Miami, FL.  He has led Centering Prayer workshops and retreats throughout the country through Contemplative Outreach.

Nancy Sheridan, SASV is a Sister of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary of Nicolet, Quebec.  She is a spiritual director and a supervisor of spiritual directors, having served on staff at the Center for Religious Development in Cambridge and also at Eastern Point Jesuit Retreat House, where she directed eight and thirty day retreats. She also actively collaborates with the Jesuit community of Portland, ME as well as other religious groups. Nancy has extensive national and international experience with Ignatian Spirituality both within the Roman Catholic tradition and ecumenically.

Fr. Paul Sullivan is a member of the Northeast US Province of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits).  He has been a member of the faculty at Cheverus High School (Portland, ME), a staff member at Eastern Point Retreat House in Gloucester, MA and served as Pastor and campus minister at University of CT and Pastor in Eastport and Gardiner, ME.  He is currently Pastor of Our Lady of Hope Parish, a Jesuit Ministry in Portland, ME, and a member of the Ignatian Spirituality Partnership of Maine.